Cagayan-bound Cessna Aircraft Located in Apayao After Reported Missing

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 2) — The wreckage of the Cessna plane reported missing while en route to Cagayan was found on the boundary of Barangay Salvacion, Luna and San Mariano Pudtol in Apayao, local officials of Cagayan and Apayao confirmed on Wednesday.

The local government of Apayao clarified that the two passengers of the plane have yet to be found, contrary to earlier reports from Cagayan officials that an Apayao Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management officer confirmed that both passengers were already found dead.

“We would like to clarify that the only confirmed information is the possible crash site of the missing Cessna 152. All other information are subject for verification,” the Apayao provincial government said.

National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council information officer Diego Mariano also said search and rescue operations are ongoing to locate the missing passengers.

According to the Apayao provincial government, the plane was carrying Capt. Edzel John Lumbao Tabuzo and student pilot Anshum Rajkumar Konde.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) said operations of the aircraft’s operator, Echo Air, have been suspended.

Investigators from the Aircraft Accident Investigation and Inquiry Board have been dispatched and will join the investigation, CAAP added.

The agency earlier reported that the Cessna-152 with call sign RP-C8598 went missing on Aug. 1 while on its way to Tuguegarao, Cagayan from Laoag, Ilocos Norte.

The last signal transmission from the aircraft was received 35 nautical miles northwest of Alcala, Cagayan, the Apayao provincial government said.

CAAP said it received an INCERFA message, which refers to uncertainty about the safety of an aircraft and its passengers, at 2:37 p.m. on Aug. 1 from Tuguegarao flight service station.

The crash was the third recent incident involving a Cessna plane in the country this year.

Last February, all four passengers of a Cessna plane that crashed near Mayon Volcano’s crater were confirmed dead after a day of search.

Authorities also located another Cessna plane in March, 44 days after it was reported missing in January. Six of its passengers were also confirmed dead.

This story will be updated.

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